Actually, little Eitan, the only survivor of the cable car accident from Lake Maggiore, would have had his first day of school on Monday in Pavia. But he was secretly brought to Israel.
[Pavia -] In the worldwide sensational cable car accident on Lake Maggiore, little Eitan lost both of his parents, his brother and two great-grandparents in the spring. The sympathy for the grave fate of the only survivor was great.
While the six-year-old’s physical injuries were slowly healing, a custody battle broke out over the orphaned between the relatives on his father’s side in Italy and the mother’s family in Israel. And this escalated at the weekend: The grandfather brought the boy from Italy to Israel, contrary to a court order and to the great shock of the custodial aunt.
Aya Biran-Nirko in Italy accuses her grandfather of kidnapping her nephew: “We are so worried,” said the woman tearfully when she spoke to reporters in front of her house in Pavia. On request, her lawyer Massimo Sana confirmed to the German Press Agency that little Eitan had been brought to Israel.
Actually, the grandfather should only have taken the boy on a trip. In the evening, however, neither of them came back to Biran-Nirko, who had been appointed as guardian by a court. The grandfather did not hand over the passport of the six-year-old despite an instruction from the court, said the aunt on the father’s side.
The public prosecutor in the northern Italian city of Pavia is already investigating kidnappings. At the same time, international regulations would be examined to bring the boy back to Italy, added the lawyer. Diplomatic channels were also activated accordingly. The Israeli Foreign Ministry first announced that it was examining the case.
Fear of further trauma
The relatives in Italy fear another trauma for the boy after the cable car disaster on Pentecost Sunday. A new life was supposed to start for him on Monday when he started school in first grade. “His bed is empty, the toys and clothes have been left behind, his new desk, school bag, notebooks, books, pencil cases …” complained his aunt. Eitan lived in Pavia in Lombardy as a baby, which is his home.
But this is exactly what the relatives in Israel contradict. “We brought Eitan back home,” Gali Peleg, the sister of the boy’s mother who was killed in the accident on May 23, told Israeli radio station 103FM on Sunday. “We didn’t kidnap Eitan, we won’t use that word either.”
The boy was “illegally taken away” from the family living in Israel, and he is closer to her and his mother’s family than to his aunt in Italy. “At the meeting here, he screamed with emotion and said: I’m finally in Israel,” said the woman.
Eiran was the only one who survived the cable car accident on Monte Mottarone on Lake Maggiore in the spring, in which nine other people died in addition to his five relatives. A pull rope broke, the emergency brakes were blocked according to previous investigations, so that the gondola rushed downhill, jumped out of its anchorage on a cable car support and crashed to the ground. [dpa]